Little Rock’s police chief has been suspended after he accidentally shot and critically injured a woman while aiming at another woman filmed shooting a gun on New Years Eve.
Police Chief Keith Humphrey was put on leave in accordance with the Little Rock Police Department guidelines for officer-involved shootings on Saturday, one day after he shot and critically injured 22-year-old Kelecia Mayo as he tried to take down suspected shooter Taz Hayes, 29.
Dramatic video showed a woman arguing with a man before smashing the window of a car with a phone. A second woman – said to be Hayes – then runs into shot and opens fire, but doesn’t hit anyone.
Humphrey, who was out on patrol as part of an ‘all hands on deck’ initiative, is said to have struck Mayo moments later.
‘On New Year’s Eve, Little Rock Police Chief Keith Humphrey initiated an all-hands-on-deck approach to patrol just as he’s don in the past and required command staff to patrol the city,’ Little Rock Mayor Frank Scott Jr. tweeted Saturday afternoon.
‘While patrolling, Chief Humphrey saw a disturbance that, unfortunately, led to a shooting,’ Scott confirmed.
‘Chief Humphrey also fired his weapon at the suspected shooter, and as is customary practice in an officer-involved shooting, he has been put on administrative leave.
‘This is an unprecedented situation because it involves our chief of police,’ he added, noting that the Arkansas State Police are now investigating the incident.
Little Rock Police Chief Keith Humphrey has been suspended after he shot and injured a 22-year-old woman while trying to take down a suspected shooter on Friday
Taz Hayes, 29, was arrested over footage said to show her shooting a gun on New Year’s Eve. Little Rock’s police chief Keith Humphrey has been suspended from his job after opening fire on Hayes and striking another woman instead
A woman was filmed arguing with a man in Little Rock just before the shooting, before smashing the window of a white sedan
Moments later a woman who cops say is suspect Taz Hayes, 29, was filmed opening fire. Police Chief Humphries aimed at her, but ended up shooting Kelecia Mayo, 22, instead, it is claimed
Humphrey was on patrol around the city on Friday when he saw a fight break out in a gas station parking lot just before 9pm, according to Arkansas State Police.
As he got out of his patrol car, authorities say, a woman fired her weapon into the group. Humphrey then reportedly fired his gun at the suspected shooter, 29-year-old Taz Hayes, but missed her – instead hitting bystander Kelecia Mayo, 22.
Mayo was then rushed to a Little Rock hospital, where she was listed in critical condition as of Saturday morning.
Hayes, meanwhile, fled the scene but was later taken into custody and charged with first-degree battery.
Kelecia Mayo, 22, was listed in critical condition following the shooting
Mayor Frank Scott Jr. confirmed Humphrey’s suspension in a statement on Twitter
The city has now asked the state police to investigate both the initial fight and Humphrey’s response in an effort to remain ‘accountable, clear and transparent,’ Scott tweeted.
The state police investigators have already recovered a bullet from a vehicle in the parking lot and will examine it to determine if it was fired by Humphrey, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports.
Once the investigation is complete, state police investigators will submit their findings to a state prosecutor who will determine if Humphrey’s use of force was consistent with Arkansas law.
In the meantime, Assistant Chief Crystal Haskins will temporarily serve as the city’s chief of police.